Thread: Derek Stepan
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02-05-2013, 01:41 PM
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Originally Posted by MPF24 View Post
It just doesn't compute. You're not going to upgrade your 22 year old two-way 50+ point center for cheap. You're certainly not going to go from what, apparently, isn't elite at all in your opinion, to elite, by pursuing cheap, rental options. How about we let our players develop, play the role they've shown they can play and be patient. Just because we made the ECF last year doesn't actually mean we automatically are entitled to go farther this year and should blow the team up if we don't. Or, I'm sorry, does the team that lost in the ECF make it to the Cup the following year ever year? Is that how it works? Some years, the stars align and you're making a really good run. You may not be as close to where you want to be as that run indicates. I'm not saying we couldn't win this year, of course but, you'll forgive me if, in this lockout shortened season, I'm not going to hit the panic button, trade prospects who we expect to contribute in the very near future(and whose contributions will be important due to their ECLs) or question the ability of our pretty legit young 2nd line C 9 games into the season. Let Hagelin go through his growing pains now. Let Kreider come back from his injury and re-adjust to the speed of the NHL. Let Stepan have more than 10 games to get going. Let Nash have more than 10 games to adjust to his new team. If we don't make it farther than last year, it doesn't mean we were wrong and our team sucks and we need to blow it up. It means Hagelin and Stepan and Kreider and Miller and Fast and McIlrath and Del Zotto and McDonagh will all be a year further in their very young development. We have a window, not a deadline.

Last year we saw the window open where our team was a legit competitor for the first time. Our progress to competing for a Cup is not, in anyway, guaranteed to be linear. We're not going to go ECF last year, lose in SCF this year, win SCF next year. We might get bounced in the second or the ECF again this year, but our window will still be open and all of these key young players will be a year better for it. You don't panic and start changing the role the kid has been playing and has been groomed for based on 9 games. You don't trade prospects like Miller or Fast who should be contributing next season for a rental. Stay the course and let the kids have their growing pains. It's not as if we went from the ECF to an 0-8 start. We're 4-4, 8 games into a season with high roster turnover. This insistence on upgrading over Stepan or competing with elite center depth has become nothing but bored and obnoxious. I wonder if the posters on all of those teams, with their elite center depth are sitting around arguing over how they can possibly compete with the Rangers elite top 4 defense depth. Teams have different strengths. There's no cookie cutter mold for success.
I never said our C core was going to be elite with a J. Jokinen/Antropov type. Just better. Here's a list of the past 5 cup winning teams:

08' DET 257 GF
09' PIT 264 GF
10' CHI 271 GF
11' BOS 246 GF
12' LAK 194 GF

12' NYR 226 GF

LAK is the only wild card out of the 5 and they started scoring almost at will in the playoffs. Both on paper and on the ice so far the Rangers have not scored nearly enough. It took us 7 games to beat the 7 and 8 seed last playoffs for the sole reason being that we couldn't score. I don't see how I can make it any clearer. Our defense is not THAT much better than the rest of the elite teams we will be competing against to account for lack of goals. If it was we wouldn't see Stu Pickles on the 3rd pair, ever (let alone on the roster).

Richter stood on his head in 94' and we won a cup. I have the feeling Lundqvist will have to do the same. Here's to hoping the "kids" play well and Lundqvist stands on his head. Not a strategy I'm willing to take into battle

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